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Classically used for treatment of orbital lesions, the lateral orbitotomy with cantholysis can be combined with a temporal craniectomy for lesions involving the middle cranial fossa.To present a single-center experience with the lateral orbitotomy approach for lesions involving the middle fossa.Twenty-five patients underwent lateral orbitotomies from April 2012 to July 2015. Excluding patients with solely intraorbital pathologies, 13 patients’ clinical and radiographic records were retrospectively reviewed.Signs/symptoms in the 13 patients (ages 28-81) included proptosis (69%), decreased visual acuity (31%), diplopia (54%), and afferent pupillary defect (69%). Pathologies were meningioma (8), esthesioneuroblastoma, lymphoma, chordoma, Ewing's sarcoma, and squamous cell carcinoma. Surgical goals were maximal safe resection in 8 patients, palliative debulking in 3 patients, and cavernous sinus biopsy in 2 patients. In 8 patients for whom maximal resection was the goal, 2 had gross total resection, while 6 had near-total resection. All patients (3) for whom palliation was the goal had symptomatic improvement. Both cavernous sinus biopsies obtained diagnostic tissue without complications. All patients with proptosis (n = 9) and diplopia (n = 7), and 2 of 4 patients with decreased visual acuity had improvement in their symptoms. No patient reported worsening of their symptoms. Mean follow-up was 12 mo (2-30 mo). Complications included oculorrhea (1), pseudomeningocele (2), transient ptosis (2), and forehead numbness (1).The lateral orbitotomy is a promising approach for carefully selected lesions with involvement of both the lateral orbit and middle cranial fossa. It provides minimally invasive access for biopsy, decompression, or resection.
View details for PubMedID 28175869